?IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT MADRAS %DATED: 21/03/2011 *CORAM THE HON'BLE MR.JUSTICE C.S.KARNAN +CMA.2195 OF 2010 #TNSTC Limited $Priya !FOR PETITIONER : B.Vijayalakshmi ^FOR RESPONDENT : P.Mani :ORDER
IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT MADRAS
THE HON’BLE MR.JUSTICE C.S.KARNAN
CIVIL MISCELLANEOUS APPEAL NO.2195 OF 2010 &
M.P.No.1 of 2010
The Managing Director,
Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation Limited,
37, Mettupalayam Road,
Coimbatore 43. … Appellant
1.Priya W/o.Late Lakshmanan 2.Ponni W/o. Chinnasamy 3.Chinnasamy S/o.Maniagounder 4.Minor Mahalakshmi ... Respondents
Prayer: Appeal filed under Section 173 of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988, against the Judgment and Decree made in M.C.O.P.No.1615 of 2006, dated 08.09.2009 on the file of the Motor Vehicle Accidents Claims Tribunal and Additional District Judge, Salem.
For Appellant : Mrs.B.Vijayalakshmi
For Respondents : Mr.P.Mani
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J U D G M E N T
The above Civil Miscellaneous Appeal has been filed by the appellant / State Transport Corporation against the award and decree passed in M.C.O.P.No.1615 of 2006, dated 08.09.2009 on the file of the Motor Accidents Claims Tribunal, Additional District Judge, Salem, on awarding a compensation a sum of Rs.5,15,800/- with interest at the rate of 7.5% per annum.
2.The short facts of the case are as follows:-
On 11.06.2006 at around 01.30 p.m., the deceased was riding his motorcycle on the Salem to Harur Main Road, while at that time the respondent Corporation bus driven by its driver, in a rash and negligent manner and dashed against the motorcyclist, as a result he had sustained multiple injuries, immediately he was taken to the Vidhya Hospital, wherein he had expired on 21.09.2006, since the medical treatment proved a failure, hence, the legal heirs of the deceased had filed the claim petition against the respondent for compensation for a sum of Rs.10,00,000/- with interest.
3.The respondent had filed a counter statement and resisted the claim petition. Actually, on 11.06.2006 the driver had driven the bus from Salem to Vellore with due caution and with moderate speed, but while at that time the deceased had ridden his motorcycle in a negligent manner and dashed against the bus, as such the accident had occurred. The age, income and occupation of the deceased are denied besides the compensation amount is excessive.
4.On the averments of both parties, the Tribunal had framed two issues for consideration, namely;
“(i)Was the accident committed by the driver of the bus in a rash and negligent manner?
(ii)Whether the claimants are entitled to receive compensation? If so, what is the quantum of compensation?”
5.On the side of the claimants, two witnesses had been examined and four documents marked which are as follows:
First Information Report, Postmortem Certificate, Legal-heir certificate and medical bills.
On the side of the respondent one witness was examined and no document, no evidence.
6.PW1 had adduced evidence that her husband Lakshmanan was proceeding on his motorcycle on 11.09.2006 at around 01.30 p.m., from Salem to Harur, when at that point of time, the respondent bus bearing Registration No. TN-33-N-1761 driven by its driver in a rash and negligent manner and dashed against the motorcycle, as a result he had sustained grievous injuries, immediately he was taken to the hospital for treatment, wherein he had expired after about 10 days. At the time of the accident the deceased’s age was 30 and he was earning Rs.6,000/- per month in a business concerning coffee seeds and wood brokerage. Second and third claimants are the parents of the deceased, fourth claimant is a minor child of the deceased. PW2 an eye witness, who spoke in one voice regarding the accident. RW1 had denied the said accident that he was not responsible, therefore, the respondent is not liable to pay compensation.
7.On considering the evidence of the witnesses, the Tribunal had awarded a sum of Rs.5,15,800/- as compensation to the claimants, the break-up of compensation is as follows:-
Rs.4,08,000/- towards loss of dependency;
(Rs.3,000 x 12 x 1/3 x 2 x 17)
Rs.35,000/- towards loss of consortium to the first claimant;
Rs.25,000/- towards loss of love and affection;
Rs.39,340/- for medical expenses;
Rs.6,000/- for pain and suffering;
Rs.2,500/- towards transport
8.Aggrieved by the said award, the appellant / Transport Corporation has filed the above appeal.
9.Learned counsel for the appellant argued that in the absence of income proof, the Tribunal had awarded a sum of Rs.4,08,000/- towards loss of dependency is on the higher side, besides Rs.35,000/- had been awarded for consortium is also on the higher side. In the said accident, two vehicles had been involved, as such contributory negligence is attributed. In the claim case, the insurer and insured of the motorcycle were necessary parties, but they have not been included in the said claim case, therefore, there is discrepancy in the said award.
10.The learned counsel for the claimant argued that the first claimant is the young widow, fourth claimant is the newly born child, other two claimants are aged parents of the deceased. As such the claim amount is not on the higher side.
11.In view of the facts and circumstances of the case and arguments advanced by the learned counsels on either side and on perusing the impugned award passed by the learned Motor Accidents Claims Tribunal, this Court if of the considered opinion that the claimants being four in number, the deceased’s age 30 years, the first claimant, a 19 years young widow and the fourth claimant, a female child newly born, the Tribunal had not granted compensation under the head of funeral expenses, therefore, the Tribunal’s impugned decision is reasonable, as such this Court is not warranted to interfere with the decision of the learned Tribunal, hence the award is confirmed which is fair and justifiable.
12.It is open to the claimants 1, 2 and 3 to withdraw their apportioned share amounts as fixed by the Tribunal with accrued interest thereon lying in the credit of M.C.O.P.No.1615 of 2006, on the file of Motor Accidents Claims Tribunal, Additional District Judge, Salem, after filing memo along with this order. This Court directs the learned Tribunal to deposit the fourth claimant’s minor share in a Nationalized Bank in proximity to the residence of the claimants under the fixed accumulative deposit scheme till the minor obtains adulthood. The fixed deposit certificate to be handed over to the first claimant i.e., the mother of the minor claimant, accordingly ordered.
13.Resultantly, the above Civil Miscellaneous Appeal is dismissed. Consequently, the Award and Decree, passed by the Motor Accidents Claims Tribunal, Additional District Judge, Salem, made in M.C.O.P.No.1615 of 2006, dated 08.09.2009 is confirmed. There is no order as to costs. Consequently, connected miscellaneous petition is closed.
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Index : Yes.
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The Motor Accidents Claims Tribunal,
Additional District Judge, Salem.
C.M.A.No. 2195 OF 2010